Recently I put a package of hand-me-downs together for a friend with a toddler. I wanted to include a puzzle, but I didn't feel right sending it without ensuring that it had every piece. I still remember the sturm und drang from the large floor puzzle of an enchanted castle which I bought for then-toddler Iris, which was missing a piece from the get-go, having instead a duplicate of another random piece (and the people from the Melissa & Doug toy company PROMISED to send the missing piece but never did).
I set myself down on the floor and began the 100 piece jigsaw of kittens, suitable for a preschooler. Lola's cat Zorro drew near. She batted at some pieces with a paw, and I shooed her away. Undeterred she pounced in a flash, seizing a piece in her mouth, and ran into Iris's room, carrying the piece under Iris's massive bunk bed. After some effort I reclaimed the piece, locked Zorro in Iris's room, finished the puzzle, disassembled it, and mailed it off along with some of our more presentable cast off clothes and a random assortment of picture books.
This gave me a whole new insight into why at Christmas time we were unable to complete a large monochromatic Escher jigsaw I'd thought would be a good holiday divertissement. I expect cats to bat pieces off the table with their paws; I don't expect them to carry them around the house in their mouths. We'd been able to do big, complicated puzzles in the past, picking up a few pieces from under the table from time to time... but we hadn't had Zorro then.
I told this story to the Sober Husband that evening.
"To make jigsaw puzzles harder, instead of getting ones with more pieces, you should have to do them with more cats," he opined.
My wife likes to do puzzles. I routinely steal a piece so I can put the last piece in, and proclaim myself the Puzzle Completer!
Now, whenever a puzzle is missing a piece, I get blamed.
My grandfather always did that, always held out a piece.
Hello mate, great blog.
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